cover image In This Moment

In This Moment

Karen Kingsbury. Howard, $23.99 (384p) ISBN 978-1-4516-8762-0

Fans of Kingsbury’s Baxter Family collection will no doubt dive into this syrupy novel focusing on Luke Baxter, a lawyer specializing in religious freedom cases. A year after high school principal Wendell Quinn started a voluntary Bible study program at his troubled, low-performing Indianapolis public high school, test scores have risen and violence has dropped dramatically schoolwide. Cami Nelson, a junior devastated by her parents’ recent separation, begins attending the Bible study under dubious pretenses: she is working covertly with her father to shut it down. He is motivated both by his secularist beliefs and spite toward his Christian wife. But even though Cami’s life unexpectedly begins to improve thanks to her growing relationship with Jesus, her dad sues the school to end the program anyway. Enter Luke, whose dedication to defending the rights of Christians to practice their faith sometimes hampers his home life. Kingsbury provides ample context for the court case, explaining many recent cases concerning religious freedoms. But the legal proceedings often get lost in the froth of overwrought emotions typical of Kingsbury’s love-conquers-all outlook. Readers of Kingsbury’s previous books will be pleased to see recurring characters, including Luke’s sister Ashley and niece Amy. Agent: Rick Christian, Alive Literary Agency. (Nov.)